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  1. #1

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    Getting started with LF

    I am finally going to get me a field camera (a Shen Hao 4x5) for shooting landscapes. I think I will start shooting using a 6x9 rollfilm back, but later I will at least try shooting some 4x5 format too.

    I have been looking at second hand lenses that would be useable both on 6x9 and 4x5.

    Any recommendations for two first lenses? Does a Super Angulon 90mm f8 + a Super Angulon 65mm f5.6 sound like a reasonable combination for landscapes (6x9 / 4x5) ?

    (It seems that the 65mm Super Angulon practically doesn't allow movements with 4x5, but I hardly can afford a 65mm lens that does)

    These lenses seem to be easy to find and not too expensive for my limited budget.

    And btw, I need that 6x9 back, too. How about a Linhof Rollex 6x9?

    Any opinions would be most welcome!

  2. #2
    Sirius Glass's Avatar
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    Start with sheet film. Shooting with roll film is just not worth the trouble, use your Rollei instead. Part of LF is learning to load, handle, unload, and develop sheet film. If you are going to take the dive, just do it! Would you start learning to drive a car by refusing to buy gas? Would you have started shooting Rolleis by taking off the Zeiss lenses because they were "inconvienent?" The money you can save by NOT BUYING a roll back would help you buy the lenses that are:"These lenses seem to be easy to find and not too expensive for my limited budget."

    Steve
    Warning!! Handling a Hasselblad can be harmful to your financial well being!

    Nothing beats a great piece of glass!

    I leave the digital work for the urologists and proctologists.

  3. #3
    Shaggysk8's Avatar
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    Yeah start with sheet film if you wanna shoot roll film buy a roll film camera.

  4. #4
    Rick A's Avatar
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    Sheet film is super easy to deal with. If you need to practice, shoot 4x5 paper negatives, you can handle those under a safe light. You can also shoot ortho-lith film, that can be handled under a dark red safe light. Just remember to load the film with the emulsion facing out.
    Rick A
    Argentum aevum

  5. #5

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    If you're looking to save money, a roll back especially a Linhof Rollex will add a lot of expense, with not so much benefit. You can buy a lot of film and holders with what the Rollex will set you back.

    For the 4x5 frame, you probably don't need to go wider than the 90, and for a first lens, you're probably better off with something a little longer. The 90 is fine for wide sweeping vistas. But it's awfully short for most anything else, though tastes vary.
    A lens like an SA 90 is also expensive compared to something in the 130-180 mm range.

    The longer lens will let you use the camera's movements more effectively, and you won't run into constraints of running out of bellows at it's minimum.

  6. #6
    Christopher Walrath's Avatar
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    The 90 may not offer TOO much in the way of movements either. Your infinity would be about 3 5/8". Make sure the camera will take it or you might need a recessed lens board. Not to discourage you. Just get things right the first time to avoid later frustrations.
    Thank you.
    CWalrath
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    "Wubba, wubba, wubba. Bing, bang, bong. Yuck, yuck, yuck and a fiddle-dee-dee." - The Yeti

  7. #7
    Ian Grant's Avatar
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    The 90mm SA would have plenty of movements for most uses, the wider the angle the greater the effects of even very slight movements and unless you're doing very critical architectural work it's very difficult to run out of coverage/movements particularly for landscape work.

    90mm Super angulons are very cheap even the f5.6 versions, also look out for the 90mm f6.8 Grandagon also re-badged as a Caltar these are also fairly common and reasonably priced.

    The 75mm Super Angulopn is another to look out for but they were less common than the 65mm's, very nice lenses and room for a small amount of movements on a 5x4. A downside to many of the 65mm SA's is the Compur 00 shutters which are small & fiddly with no Aperture preview lever or T, so you have to set to B and use a locking cable release - but they are cheap

    Ian

  8. #8

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    Agree with what most everyone is saying, for landscapes go right to 4x5. Using a roll film back on a view camera may seem crazy, but depends what and how you may be shooting. Although it's not LF, I have a Galvin 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 view camera with 90/f8 and a graflex back and use it just for the swings and tilts in MF, fun camera to play with. Also depends how big you want to print.

  9. #9

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    Quote Originally Posted by Dave Ludwig View Post
    Although it's not LF, I have a Galvin 2 1/4 x 3 1/4 view camera with 90/f8 and a graflex back and use it just for the swings and tilts in MF, fun camera to play with. Also depends how big you want to print.
    Thanks Dave and others.

    I am not going to print larger than 12x16", so I think the advantage of 4x5" over 6x9cm would be rather small. Furthermore, I don't have any gear for developing or enlarging 4x5" film, and I am not very keen on buying that either.

    But I want to have a camera with movements. 6x9cm monorails are rather hard to find, and a Linhof Technika or Horseman don't seem to be ideal for landscapes. Thus I am going to get a 4x5" Shen Hao and a 6x9cm back.

    Btw, a used Rollex back can be had for just 50-100 Euros. I will probably get a couple of 4x5" film holders as well and shoot some 4x5" too, but I can only scan it.

    More comments on the choice of lenses are welcome

    Ps. perhaps I should have posted on the medium format forum, they would not try to convert me

  10. #10
    paul_c5x4's Avatar
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    Once you start shooting with a Shen Hao, sooner or later you'll try sheet film. From that point on, you will be hooked

    In the meantime, if you can find a roll back that does multiple formats (I know there is one that does 6x6 up to 6x12), I'm sure you will enjoy it.

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